Indigenous Art in Toronto: more ways to explore Indigenous history and art in the city
Installation view of Kent Monkman: Being Legendary. Courtesy ROM
The Power Plant’s Fall 2022 exhibition Arctic/Amazon: Global Networks of Indigeneity opened on Saturday, October 1. This group show has sparked important dialogue by exploring the ways in which Indigenous contemporary artists and collaborators take on issues of climate change, globalized Indigeneity, and colonial encounters within the circumpolar Arctic and the Amazon regions during times of crisis.
For those who wish to continue the conversation, check out these Toronto institutions to learn more about Indigenous art from all corners of the world:
The Royal Ontario Museum
Kent Monkman: Being Legendary
100 Queens Park
Curious about Indigenous history in Canada? Stop by the ROM before March 19, 2023, to be schooled by infamous Cree artist Kent Monkman’s alter ego, Miss Chief Eagle Testickle. Being Legendary uses the power of traditional storytelling to reframe colonial interruptions on Turtle Island. The exhibition, which is curated by Monkman himself, contains new works inspired by objects belonging to the ROM’s permanent collection.
TD Gallery of Indigenous Art
Rotating exhibition schedule
79 Wellington Street W
If you were fascinated by Arctic/Amazon artist Couzyn van Heuvelen’s sculptures, which depict traditional Inuit tools and objects, the TD Gallery of Indigenous Art should be your next stop. A selection of stone sculptures, created by various artists, are currently on view, portraying both the Inuit lifestyle and the traditional mythology that anchors important Inuit beliefs. As a bonus, if you missed Shuvinai Ashoona’s 2019 exhibition at The Power Plant, you can still see one of her drawings by taking a break from the bustle of downtown Toronto and visiting the TD Gallery of Indigenous Art.
Art Gallery of Ontario
The Indigenous Collection
317 Dundas St W
Love the international artworks in Arctic/Amazon? Check out the AGO’s Indigenous Collection, which includes masks from the Punu people; figurines from the Luba and Yoruba peoples; and over 300 Australian Aboriginal boomerangs, each representing a distinct regional style. Of course, First Nations, Inuit, and Metis art is also featured, with a particular focus on Inuit contemporary art produced in Canada after 1948.
Part of Gallery Gevik
12 Hazelton Ave
If you love all of the works listed here and want to purchase one for your own collection, you may want to check out Gallery Phillip. Since 1976, Yorkville’s Gallery Phillip has exhibited a robust collection of First Nations and Inuit art in a variety of styles and mediums. Gallery Phillip also holds the Cape Dorset Print Collection, a series that has been produced through Kinngait Studios since 1959. The collection features stunning limited-edition prints featuring artists from Kinngait (formerly known as Cape Dorset), known as the Capital of Inuit Art. The newest series dropped in October, so act fast.